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March 19, 2019

“Affordable” senior housing proposed for Vint Hill

The complex would stand on five acres at Rogues and Farm Station roads.
We’re trying to keep the people here that have lived here and worked here all their lives. They shouldn’t have to move away when they retire.
— Kim Hart, Good Works president
Cecelia House Proposal
• What: $31 million, 125-unit senior citizens’ apartment complex.

• Where: 5 acres at Rogues (Route 602) and Farm Station roads at Vint Hill near New Baltimore.

• Property owner: Vint Hill Village LLC.

• Developers/owners: Good Works, Middleburg; Saint Mary’s Housing Development Corp., Bethesda, Md.; REBJ, Rockville, Md.

• Buildings: 2, four-story structures totaling 115,000 to 125,000 square feet; buildings would be joined by an enclosed breezeway.

• Parking: At least 125 spaces — one per apartment.

• Zoning: Planned Commercial Industrial District.

• County government approvals: Under Planned Commercial Industrial District, project requires site plan and related administrative approvals.

• Schedule: Partners hope to break ground next spring and complete the project in the summer of 2021.
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
If all goes according to plan, Vint Hill could get a 125-unit, “affordable” senior citizens’ apartment complex in about 2-1/2 years.

Kim Hart, president of Middleburg-based Good Works, and his two partners hope to break ground next spring on the proposed $31 million Cecelia House at Rogues (Route 602) and Farm Station roads near New Baltimore.

It would take up to 18 months to complete the project, Mr. Hart said.

But that schedule depends on Good Works, Rockville, Md.-based REBJ and Bethesda-based Saint Mary’s Housing Development Corp. in June winning approval from the Virginia Housing Development Authority for $12 million in tax credits to help fund the affordable housing project, he said.

“It’s highly competitive,” said Mr. Hart, former manager of Middleburg-based Windy Hill Development Co., which recently developed affordable housing projects in The Plains and Marshall. “If we don’t get (the tax credits) this time, we’ll try again next year.”

The balance of the project’s cost would be funded with a $13-million, low-interest USDA loan and $6 million in financing through Saint Mary’s.

Zoning at Vint Hill — a former 695-acre Amy base redeveloped as a mixed-use community — allows the apartment project by-right, with county site plan approval and other administrative oversight.

The proposal calls for two, four-story structures totaling 115,000 to 125,000 square feet. Joined by an enclosed breezeway, they will include about 88 one-bedroom and 37 two-bedroom apartments.

“About 70 percent of our folks will be single,” said Mr. Hart, explaining the spilt.

At least one member of each household must be 62 or older. No minors may live in the units. Ten percent, or about a dozen apartments, would be reserved for military veterans.

Thirteen of the apartments would be fully handicapped-accessible.

Monthly rentals would range from $754 to $1,194 for the one-bedroom units and $905 to $1,432 for the two-bedroom apartments.

Renters would meet income and net worth limits to qualify for the units.

Rent would increase 2 percent or less annually, Mr. Hart said.

The region’s demand for affordable housing far exceeds the supply, said Mr. Hart, who brings decades of experience to that market.

In January 2017, the George Mason University Center for Regional Analysis published the “Loudoun County Housing Needs Assessment.” The study found that:

• From 2015 to 2040, Loudoun will need more than 11,900 homes to meet the needs of households headed by people at least 65 years old.

• 51.9 percent of 65-year-olds who live alone struggle to pay rent.

To some degree, those numbers speak to housing challenges facing Fauquier’s elderly, Mr. Hart suggested.

The waiting list for the Warrenton Manor senior citizens’ apartment complex can be up to three years, said Mr. Hart, whose partner Bob Margolis — the owner of REBJ — purchased that property in June 2015. (He called Mr. Margolis “one of the largest affordable housing owners and managers” in the Mid-Atlantic, with a portfolio of more than 10,000 units.)

“There’s just a huge need for the kind of places we do,” Mr. Hart said. “We’ll have no trouble filling (Cecelia House) up.”

He began discussing the project with a Vint Hill Village representative about a year ago.

The partners last month signed a contract to buy the proposed five-acre project site from Vint Hill Village LLC. Mr. Hart declined to discuss the details of the agreement.

For various reasons, he considers Vint Hill well suited for the proposal.

“It’s an area designated for growth,” he said. “It has water and sewer and roads in place. It’s just a convenient and appropriate place to do it. It’s close to all kinds of support services needed for any community; the project fits in with the zoning.”

Residents will have access to an onsite “services coordinator” and to a shuttle bus to take them to shop and run errands, Mr. Hart explained.

An annual survey will help the coordinator identify services residents want, according to a three-page overview of the Cecelia House project.

Weekly activities will include crafts, bingo, Bible study and exercise classes, the document states.

The partners’ goal remains simple, Mr. Hart said.

“We’re trying to keep the people here that have lived here and worked here all their lives. They shouldn’t have to move away when they retire.”

The project owners would pay real estate taxes on Cecelia House during the 15-year life of the VHDA credits. When those credits expire, nonprofit Saint Mary Housing Development Corp. would take ownership of the property and ask the county board of supervisors to exempt it from real estate taxes.

Contact Don Del Rosso at Don@FauquierNow.com or 540-270-0300.

Cecelia House Layout by on Scribd

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bethaliles · March 19, 2019 at 3:25 pm
While I love to see new adult housing going up, the income guidelines that are in place to keep their federal funding prevent a decent portion of the adult community from living in these places. My deceased father's retirement income puts my mother just over the limit....and the few communities that don't have the guidelines are priced out of her reach.
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